|Title||The Hidden Realm of God: The Historical Jesus and His Healing Philosophy|
|Publisher||James Gaither, 601 SW 4th Terrace, Lees Summit, MO 64063|
APPENDIX A – ABSTRACT
The Therapeutic Psychosomatic Effects of The Philosophy of the Historical Jesus
Objectives: (1) To explore the possibility that Jesus could be classified as a philosopher by comparing “authentic sayings” of Jesus to philosophies of his era. (2) To test for effects of listening to sayings attributed to Jesus on peripheral skin temperature and self-reported emotional states.
Design and setting: Jesus’ “authentic sayings” were compared in content and style with the Greek philosophical schools of Cynics, Stoics, and Pythagoreans, as well as with the Chinese philosophies of Taoism and Moism. Jesus’ philosophy was examined for elements related to research in holistic health methods. The study recorded peripheral skin temperature while participants listened to recordings in church office spaces and used a pre-test and post-test administration of the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory and Profile of Mood States (Brief form).
Participants: Adult volunteers (N = 68) from two Unity Churches, 64% females and 36% males.
Results: Clear similarities in content and style were found between Jesus’ philosophy and the philosophies of Cynicism, Stoicism, Pythagoreanism, Taoism and Moism. Parallels were found between Jesus’ philosophy and holistic therapy methodologies. Peripheral skin temperature of participants increased significantly (p < .01) while listening to recordings, indicating some had relaxation responses. Self-reported anxiety traits decreased significantly (p < .01) after listening to recordings, especially for those who listened to the recording of “authentic sayings” of Jesus. Self-reported anxiety states and other negative emotions similarly decreased after listening to recordings, but not to a statistically significant degree.
Conclusions: Preliminary evidence suggests that (1) Jesus could be classified as a philosopher whose philosophy had therapeutic effects and (2) listening to the “authentic sayings” of Jesus and possibly other types of literature can help reduce anxiety states and induce stress relieving meditation states. Results indicate that research into effects of listening to different types of wisdom literature could produce methods beneficial to emotional and physical health.